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NCJ Number: 136080 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: When the Victim Is a Child, Second Edition
Author(s): D Whitcomb
Corporate Author: Abt Associates, Inc
United States of America
Date Published: 1992
Page Count: 183
Sponsoring Agency: Abt Associates, Inc
Cambridge, MA 02138
National Institute of Justice (NIJ)
Washington, DC 20531
National Institute of Justice/
Rockville, MD 20849
NCJRS Photocopy Services
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
US Dept of Justice NIJ Pub
Washington, DC 20531
Contract Number: OJP-86-C-009
Sale Source: National Institute of Justice/
NCJRS paper reproduction
Box 6000, Dept F
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America

NCJRS Photocopy Services
Box 6000
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
United States of America
Document: PDF
Type: Issue Overview
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Intended primarily for judges, this report reviews new research on the consequences of child sexual abuse, the capabilities of children as witnesses, and the impact of the court process on child victims; it also analyzes pertinent statutes and case law.
Abstract: The first two chapters update statistics on the incidence of child sexual abuse and incorporate new research findings on child victims as witnesses. Topics covered under the latter subject are needs related to immaturity, children's reactions to victimization, children's memory, jurors' perceptions of children's credibility, and the impact of criminal prosecution on child victims. A chapter that explores the pros and cons of certain interviewing techniques with children focuses on the use of anatomical dolls, the use of leading questions, and the videotaping of interviews. The remaining seven chapters address legal issues and practical concerns in innovative practices. Topics covered are the competency of child witnesses, alternatives to traditional courtroom procedures, statutory exceptions to hearsay, restrictions on public access to the courtroom when child victim-witnesses are involved, the use of expert witnesses, the victim advocate, and the streamlining of the adjudication process. The final chapter reviews what has been learned through research and practice regarding the nature and prevalence of child sexual abuse as well as the societal response to it. Current challenges and directions for future research are discussed. 8 tables, 8 exhibits, and appended tables of statutory citations as well as selected legal readings.
Main Term(s): Child victims; Police interview/interrogation of juvenile
Index Term(s): Child protection laws; Child Sexual Abuse; Competency to testify; Expert witnesses; Juvenile witnesses; Victim/Witness Advocates; Video taped testimony
Note: From the National Institute of Justice's "Issues and Practices."
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